WEF Recognizes Utilities for Reducing Nutrient Loading to Waterways

The Water Environment Federation is recognizing 15 utilities for significantly reducing nutrient pollution, one of the leading problems for the health of waterways across the United States.

The utilities were selected through Nutrient Smart (NSmart), a collaboration between WEF and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to recognize utilities that have demonstrated nitrogen or phosphorus reductions and developed robust community outreach programs.

NSmart also provides information and tools to help utilities make large reductions in nutrients and discharge cleaner water to the environment. According to the EPA, more than 100,000 miles of rivers and streams — close to 2.5 million acres of lakes and ponds — and more than 800 square miles of bays and estuaries are impacted by nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in the U.S. Nutrient pollution can also lead to algal blooms that are harmful to humans and animals.

“Nutrients are one of the most common pollution problems in U.S. waterways, and WEF is glad to shine a light on utilities that are leading the way in reducing nitrogen and phosphorus and engaging their communities,” says WEF President Jamie Eichenberger. “NSmart joins other WEF programs like Utility of the Future and ReNEW which aim to create bold, aspirational calls to action to accelerate resource recovery.” The following utilities have reduced nutrients by at least 90%:

  • Nine Springs Treatment Facility — Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District in Wisconsin
  • Upper Occoquan Service Authority in Virginia
  • Town of Cary, North Carolina
  • Dorsey Run Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant in Maryland
  • Stafford County Utilities in Virginia
  • Rocky Gap State Park Wastewater Treatment Plant in Maryland
  • Freedom District Wastewater Treatment Plant in Maryland

These utilities have reduced nutrients by 85 to 90%:

  • Lancaster Area Sewer Authority in Pennsylvania
  • City of Boise, Idaho

These utilities have reduced nutrients by 70 to 85%:

  • Narragansett Bay Commission in Rhode Island
  • South Platte Renew in Colorado
  • Waterbury Water Pollution Control Facility in Connecticut)
  • American Bottoms Regional Wastewater Facility in Illinois

These utilities are working toward nutrient reduction of 30 to 70% and beginning outreach to the community on the issue:

  • City of Greensboro, North Carolina — Water Resources Department, Water Reclamation Division
  • Centennial Water and Sanitation District in Colorado

These utilities were additionally recognized as innovators for showcasing an outstanding example of treatment technology or leadership in nutrient management:

  • Treatment Technology — City of Boise
  • Treatment Technology — Narragansett Bay Commission
  • Treatment Technology — Town of Cary
  • Leadership in Nutrient Management — Upper Occoquan Service Authority 

To learn more, visit www.wef.org/NSmart or contact PDube@wef.org.


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